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Classic Mustangs Tech Forum

Technical discussions specific to 1964-1967, 1968-1970, and 1971-1973 Classic Mustang. Discuss all tech related to in-line six cylinder and V8 powered Vintage Mustangs here.

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Unread 05-19-2011   #1 (permalink)
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Default is the upper radiator hose supposed to expand & be hard when mustang is running

289 motor:

The upper rad hose is flexible when cold, once heated up, it expands [gets fatter] and hard [can not squeeze it].

Is this normal, or am i supposed to be able to sqeeze it while the car is hot and running?.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #2 (permalink)
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no that is not normal.

it sounds like you may have a blown head gasket. exhaust gases are getting into your cooling system and causing a pressure build up which is making your upper radiator hose to puffup like a ballon.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #3 (permalink)
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head gasket???
I have no water in my oil, oil is very clean & normal?

CAN IT BE THE VALVES?
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Unread 05-19-2011   #4 (permalink)
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Blown head gaskets do not always produce water in the oil or oil in the water. I had a cracked head once (very similar to a blown head gasket) and it would pressurize the cooling system without mixing oil and water.

It's not the valves. I think you may have found out what's going on with your low compression in #8 from your other thread...

http://www.allfordmustangs.com/forum...-cylinder.html

I'm betting that the head gasket (or a crack) is letting compression gasses into your coolant passages. The pressure is very high in a cylinder as you know - upwards of 150+ psi and the pressure in a cooling system is around 15 psi (think of your radiator cap rating). So, when you have a very small and tight leak - the high pressure in the cylinder can over come the flaw in the gasket or crack in the head and push into the coolant passage. Whereas the pressure is so low in the cooling system that it can not push coolant into the cylinder.

Eventaully the flaw will get worse and start mixing coolant and oil and you'll lose most if not all your compression in #8.

That's my long distance diagnosis.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #5 (permalink)
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you said that my problem looks like a "flaw in the gasket or crack in the head"

There's a guy here on craigslist selling a GOOD set of 289 heads, do you think i should buy them, install them & that will take care of my problem?

***bUYING THESE HEADS, would be cheaper than taking my heads to the machine shop and having my heads fixed.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #6 (permalink)
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I was doing some research on this issue and found the following link with some pretty good info that might help you out.

Upper radiator hose high pressure - DSM Forums


I've always heard that a blown head gasket will not always put coolant into the oil and this kinda supports that.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #7 (permalink)
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I FORGOT TO SAY:

MY 289 IS ALSO RUNNING ROUGH, LIKE IT HAS A MISS...

****WILL A 'flaw in the gasket or crack in the head' CAUSE IT TO IDLE ROUGH AND DEVELOP A MISS? '
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Unread 05-19-2011   #8 (permalink)
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EDIT: Blown gaskets/cracks in the head or block can cause engines to run like they have a miss. I do have to say the minor leaks (that are not just plain obvious by mixing oil and coolant) are less likely to cause a miss in the motor. I would check the ignition system too.

You may just have a bad gasket. So don't buy anything until you determine what the problem is. Pull the heads, have someone you trust and has some experience looking at blown gaskets and cracked heads and see if you can find the problem. Make your decisions and spend your money from there.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #9 (permalink)
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At temperature, the cooling system has 13 to 18 psi of pressure depending on your radiator cap. This will make your upper hose hard enough so you can barely make a dent when squeezing it with your fingers. If you have a problem that puts more pressure than that in the system, the cap should let it off (water or steam coming out the overflow tube). If the hose is expanding a lot, I would expect a bad cap or an old soft hose before I thought the worst (head gasket). If you have access to a newer car that you know is OK, feel it's hose next time it is hot. That will give you some comparison.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hwyman View Post
At temperature, the cooling system has 13 to 18 psi of pressure depending on your radiator cap. This will make your upper hose hard enough so you can barely make a dent when squeezing it with your fingers. If you have a problem that puts more pressure than that in the system, the cap should let it off (water or steam coming out the overflow tube). If the hose is expanding a lot, I would expect a bad cap or an old soft hose before I thought the worst (head gasket). If you have access to a newer car that you know is OK, feel it's hose next time it is hot. That will give you some comparison.
Right answer. Not saying you don't have issues, but there is a test for combustion gases in cooling system. And if leaking into combustion chamber it would naturally miss trying to burn water. Pull the plugs and see if any look like they have been steam cleaned. Exhaust will smell sweet if passing anti-freeze.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #11 (permalink)
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Hoses will also swell up like a sausage when they are shot.
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Unread 05-19-2011   #12 (permalink)
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Pressure at operating temp is good as the cooling system is pressurized when hot. Pressure when cold is bad and would mean that something is pressurizing the system (combustion gases-head gasket etc...)
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Unread 05-19-2011   #13 (permalink)
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To clarify though, even when hot, the hose should not be rock hard
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Unread 05-19-2011   #14 (permalink)
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my '66 289 top radiator hose has always been pretty hard when running. Just the way it is. Maybe try a new hose (for safety too) & new cap. That's the cheap & easy way to go. I wouldnt say mine has got a bubble in it, just that its pretty pressurized after parking it. I think its normal. it is for my car anyways. The new hose that i installed a couple years ago was/is the same way.

Its does look scary tho i admit. Looks as if its ready to burst, but it never does.
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Unread 05-27-2011   #15 (permalink)
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This could also be caused by clogged coolant circuit, here in México we call it "camisa de agua" wich translates to <water shirt> i don't know the term over there, but is the circuit filled with coolant that runs all around the engine block, if these get clogged they will likely to gain you pressure on the coolant sistem wich could cause the hose to expand due the high presure.
And also you would notice your car to be running unusually hot.

Ihope this helps
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